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random musings of a crazy cat lady

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Lake Effects Mushroom and Leek Soup

It's Sunday. I was getting ready to run errands when a big band of lake effects snow blew in and cover up my newly plowed driveway and sidewalk. My thoughts turned to soup, which is perhaps not too surprising since it was also lunchtime. I decided to make mushroom soup using a bunch of dried mushrooms that I bought at the warehouse store. I soaked about half of them (2.5 oz) and then tried to figure out how I wanted to cook them.
I've never made mushroom soup before. I'm not a fan of the creamy kind so I envisioned something brothy with big pieces of mushrooms. Most recipes I found online were for the creamy kind, and even the brothy ones didn't quite have what I was looking for. I used them as a general guideline and made up my own. It had stopped dumping snow by that point so I ventured down the hill to Wegman's and bought some leeks for the soup.
It came out quite well. I left it low calorie and didn't add any potatoes or barley, but those would be tasty additions. I have a block of tofu that I may add at some point. It's about as easy as it gets so feel free to improvise with your preferred ingredients/seasonings/etc, or whatever you have around the house. I'm sure it would be quite tasty with fresh mushrooms or Asian flavorings.

Lake Effects Mushroom and Leek Soup
makes appx 6 large servings

2.5 oz dried mushrooms (mine were a mix of different types)
1 tsp salt
6-8 cups broth
1/4 cup butter or olive oil, or a mix (use less if you're trying to keep it really light)
2 leaks, white parts only, sliced thinly
4 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 cup white wine
1 tbsp soy sauce
1 tsp fines herbes
salt and pepper to taste

Put mushrooms in saucepan and cover with about 4 or 5 inches of water + add salt. The mushrooms will tend to float - use a bowl to hold them in place underwater. Bring the water to a boil and then let it cool and soak for at least 30 minutes.
Drain the mushrooms and save the water. Dry them with a paper towel and cut them up into bite size pieces, if necessary. In a large soup pot or dutch oven, heat up oil/butter and saute mushroom and leeks until somewhat softened and browned. Add garlic and saute briefly (30 seconds or when you can start to smell it). Add wine and deglaze pan. Add broth, herbs, soy sauce and mushroom water and bring to a boil. Simmer until mushrooms and leeks are tender. Add salt and pepper to taste (salt really brings out the taste of the mushrooms). Enjoy.


  1. I did a nice black bean soup today with all sorts of leftover veggies thrown in... and I did a beef barley mushroom soup a few weeks ago that was yummy... sounds close to this... I also do not really care for the creamy mushroom soups

    1. Your soups sound tasty! I had already planned to make a chicken dish tonight so I left the mushroom soup as a side dish this time. I still have a lot of dried mushrooms so next time I may make it a main course.